Common Dreads

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Common Dreads
Studio album by Enter Shikari
Released 15 June 2009
Recorded September 2008–February 2009 at Arreton Manor, UK
Genre
Length 50:27
Label Ambush Reality (UK)
PIAS Recordings (Europe)
Tiny Evil (United States)
Hostess Entertainment (Japan)
Producer Enter Shikari, Andy Gray
Enter Shikari chronology
The Zone
(2007)
Common Dreads
(2009)
Live at Milton Keynes
(2009)
Singles from Common Dreads
  1. "Juggernauts"
    Released: 1 June 2009
  2. "No Sleep Tonight"
    Released: 17 August 2009

Common Dreads is the second studio album by Enter Shikari released on June 15, 2009 and June 16 in the US.[3] Recording of the album began in September 2008 and ended in late February 2009. The album was produced and mixed by Andy Gray at Arreton Manor. Guitar production was carried out by Dan Weller of WellerHill and the band SikTh.

History[edit]

Enter Shikari began work on their second album towards the end of 2008 and started demoing songs in "The 'Low" (episodes released on YouTube by Enter Shikari showing their progress.)[4]

In late September, the band posted a video on their YouTube channel of "Antwerpen" filmed live in "The 'Low".[5] This track was to become the first track released, made available as a free download, linked from the band's MySpace page.[6] A video has now been released for the single "Juggernauts".

The new album was recorded in Arreton Manor situated on the Isle of Wight. Several new songs were played live in the tours and festivals leading up to the new album. The album has a political motive behind it and references to the current economic climate is a topic that is covered.

The new single, Juggernauts, was premièred on Thursday the 15th of April on Radio 1's Zane Lowe show, and a video was released viewable on their website.[7] "Rou" Reynolds told Kerrang! that the song was inspired by the book Tescopoly by Andrew Simms.[8]

On Monday 8 June 2009, the album was made available to stream to the public from the NME website for free. It released officially on the 15th of June 2009 through Ambush Reality.

It entered the album charts at number 16 selling 15,000 copies in its first week.

It was announced via the Enter Shikari website that the second single from the album would be "No Sleep Tonight", to be released on the 17th of August 2009.

Enter Shikari's song Wall premièred on Zane Lowe's show on 29 September 2009, but is not scheduled for release as an official single. The next official single was Zzzonked, with the official video being released on Ambush Reality/Enter Shikari's official YouTube Channel on the 7th Oct 2009. This was recorded at Norwich on the first leg of their European tour in 2009, The video can be seen here.[9]

The album has a distinct stylistic change to Take to the Skies, most notably, more use of clean vocals and a mixture of more electronic music genres, including drum and bass, electro house and dubstep, as well as the trance and electronic hardcore which was explored on their debut album.

Lyrics[edit]

There is a drastic lyrical change in the new album. The band formerly wrote lyrics concerning various different subjects and made frequent use of metaphors. In Common Dreads, the band's lyrical subjects concern socio-political topics, like in "Step Up", a song that critiques free world trade. The song "No Sleep Tonight" speaks about the ecological situation of today. The song "Fanfare for the Conscious Man" contains lyrical connotations to the injustice of the various wars the government were engaging in whilst Enter Shikari were writing the album, the line, "Our gracious queen should grasp her crown, and take a good fucking swing at Blair and Brown" confirms the anti-war views of this song. The band expresses further political ideas in the song "Juggernauts" where the closing line is; "The idea of community will be something displayed in a museum", when coupled with the anti-capitalist and hopeless tone of previous lyrics, can be interpreted as a Pro-Collectivist stance.

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AbsolutePunk (78%) link
Allmusic 3.5/5 stars link
Digital Spy 3/5 stars link
Entertainment.ie 2.5/5 stars link
Kerrang! 5/5 stars
Metal Hammer 9/10 stars
NME 5/10 stars link
The Observer 3/5 stars link
Planet Sound 5/10 stars link
Rock Sound 9/10 stars link
The Times 2/5 stars link

Common Dreads has polarised critics. Ultimate-Guitar rated the album with an overall rating of 9.3/10.[10] Similarly, music magazines Kerrang! and Metal Hammer gave very positive reviews, Kerrang! rating the album 5/5. The album also has its critics. Digital Spy gave the album 3/5 calling it 'hit and miss'. Pete Paphides of The Times gave the album 2 stars out of 5, describing it as "a titanically inadvisable mash-up between Gallows and John Craven’s Newsround."[11] Similarly, Lauren Murphy of entertainment.ie described it as "an overkill of brawn, insufficient brain."[12]

Tracklisting[edit]

All lyrics written by Roughton "Rou" Reynolds, all music composed by Enter Shikari.

No. Title Length
1. "Common Dreads"   2:08
2. "Solidarity"   3:16
3. "Step Up"   4:40
4. "Juggernauts"   4:44
5. "Wall"   4:29
6. "Zzzonked"   3:27
7. "Havoc A"   1:40
8. "No Sleep Tonight"   4:16
9. "Gap in the Fence"   4:07
10. "Havoc B"   2:52
11. "Antwerpen"   3:15
12. "The Jester"   3:55
13. "Halcyon"   0:42
14. "Hectic"   3:17
15. "Fanfare for the Conscious Man"   3:45
Total length:
50:27

Personnel[edit]

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (2009) Peak
position
Belgian Albums Chart 94
UK Albums Chart 16

References[edit]